In some circumstances, a parent may claim undue hardship. Undue hardship is one of the exceptions to the table amount talked about above. Undue hardship means that the person’s circumstances would either make it difficult to pay the required amount of support (if they are the payor), or support the child on the amount they are receiving (if they are the recipient). Undue hardship is not about claiming that you ‘can’t afford it.’


Undue hardship is a very difficult argument to make, and it requires a two-step test to be passed. First, the person making the application must show that they have an ‘undue hardship circumstance.’ If you cannot show that you have at least one of these specific circumstances, you cannot go on with the second part of the test. If you can show that you have an undue hardship circumstance, you then have to perform a standard-of-living comparison between your household, and the other party’s household. You, or a lawyer acting on your behalf, must do the calculations for this test – the court will usually not do this for you.


The first part of the undue hardship test is showing that you have at least one of the undue hardship circumstances. If you do not meet this first part of the test, you cannot go onto the second part (your application has failed).


Undue hardship circumstances include:



Family Law - Question #6

What is ‘undue hardship’ and what are the circumstances for claiming it?